Recipe courtesy of Jet Tila

Sweet and Sour Pork

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 35 min
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: 2 to 4 servings
Sweet and Sour actually has roots from Western China and isn’t just a Chinese American Classic. The pineapples were added here, but the spirit of sour and sweet is a classic Asian combination. And did you know that ketchup also has roots from Asia, formerly known as ke-chap, a fermented fish sauce? I’ve found the balance in my version using Worcestershire sauce.


Sweet and Sour Sauce:

Pork Marinade:

Chinese Frying Flour:

Sweet and Sour Pork:


  1. For the sweet and sour sauce: Whisk together the ketchup, pineapple juice, vinegar, sugar, cornstarch slurry, Worcestershire and red food coloring in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. For the pork marinade: Combine the pork, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and 2 tablespoons water in a large bowl. Massage the pork well for about 30 seconds
  3. For the Chinese frying flour: Place the cornstarch, flour and baking soda into a medium bowl and whisk well to aerate.
  4. For the sweet and sour pork: Preheat the vegetable oil in a 6- to 7-quart Dutch oven or pot over high heat to 360 degrees F.
  5. Add 3/4 to 1 cup water to the bowl with the marinating pork. Add 2/3 cup of the Chinese frying flour into the bowl about 1/3 cup at a time and mix into the pork until it feels like medium pancake batter. Fry in two batches until the pork is golden brown and has an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, 4 to 6 minutes per batch. Drain the pork on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. You can also hold it in a 200-degree F oven to keep the pork hot and crispy.
  6. Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat and add the high-temperature cooking oil. When you see the first whisps of white smoke, stir in the garlic, onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, pineapple and scallions and toss to cook for 45 seconds until all the colors brighten. Pour the reserved sweet and sour sauce into the pan and stir gently until it comes to a boil and the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, 1 to 2 minutes. Toss the pork into the sauce and vegetables to combine well for about 30 seconds. When the pork and vegetables are evenly suspended in the sauce, remove from the heat and serve immediately.